Thursday, March 18, 2010


Before chaining himself to the White House fence, Lt. Choi made a speech, part of which is as follows:

Hello. My name is Lt. Dan Choi. I am being discharged from the US Army because I am gay and dared to say it out loud.

Today, I am here on a mission with Capt. Jim Pietrangelo, and we are asking you all to join us. We’re calling you to action because we are at a turning point -- a moment in time where talk is no longer enough, and action is required.

Equality is not going to happen by itself.

You have been told that the President has a plan. But Congressman Barney Frank confirmed to us this week that the President still is not fully committed to repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell this year.

And if we don’t seize this moment it may not happen for a very long time....

I also read that Robin McGehee of Get Equal was also arrested.

Towleroad reports:

Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese was reportedly nowhere to be seen during the Choi action either.

HRC released a statement this afternoon, offering an excuse for why Solmonese and others stayed at the rally (was there any rally left after Choi left?) and did not accompany Lt. Choi and Captain Pietrangelo:

"Today more than 1000 people showed up at a rally - 500 of which signed up to become more involved in the fight to repeal 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell.' Joe Solmonese along with Eric Alva and others felt it was important to stay and engage those at the rally in ways they can continue building the pressure needed for repeal. This does nothing to diminish the actions taken by Lt. Choi and others. This is the nature of social change and everyone has a role to play."

We need the Lt. Chois, the Jim Pietrangelos, the Robin McGeehes! Also, as far as I'm concerned, and have long felt, the HRC is far too timid as a civil rights organization.
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Joe Solomnese is a big fraud, with his DADT rally staged by Kathy Griffin. What an outrage! That was definitely an example of people using Gay Rights as a platform for self-aggrandizement. Anyone who belongs to HRC should cancel their membership immediately. As for Kathy Griffin, consign her to the tacky has-been bin!



This was just posted by "Diane" in the comments section of

"We need to stop preaching to the choir. We need to be loud. Only squeaky wheels get grease. We sit back with complacency every day around this country and around this world saying 'oh, one day...' and yes, the one day is slowly coming around. New laws have been written, and old laws have been abolished, but plenty laws against us still stand, and plenty continue to be written.
Call your representatives and Call your senators on state and national levels. Let them know WHO YOU ARE, and that YOU EXIST. And ask them what they are doing for you. This is how revolution begins. Stop being silent. Stop waiting for someone else to tell you when to go. And don't just call once. Don't just write once. Don't just let only two people chain themselves to a fence.
Don't wait for Gay Pride in June to let everyone see our numbers, and yet again preach to the choir. Don't wait yet again to show ourselves in such stereotypical fashion. Let them see (us) as the people we are everyday. Let them see us as the people that go to all schools, sit in every kind of car on every road, play every sport, work every job, and that we are known by everybody, everywhere. That we are your grandparents, parents, brothers, sisters, your friends, your co-workers, and yes we are the people that defend your freedoms as a country even though that country won't defend us. Let them know.
Begin your revolution."

Jerry Maneker said...

Thanks so much, Don Charles. Diane's comment is absolutely right on the mark!!!! No more frivolity, no more apolitical indolence, no more self-defeating and self-destructive rhetoric. Now is the time to become meaningfully activist in any and every venue possible.

And, I would add, that a fire has to be lit under the HRC to become far more aggressive in agitating for equal rights for LGBT people, and if that doesn't work, and I doubt it will, it's best to not support them, and we'd likely be far better off without them.

I would like to see a far more aggressive HRC, but that doesn't look at all likely, so I am in absolute agreement with you that anyone who is sincere about this fight for equality should not support that organization that has, in my opinion, been hitherto ineffective and pathetic.

It would be great if another LGBT Rights organization replaced it that contained a President and staff that have a fire in the belly to help facilitate and coordinate meaningful and effective grassroots and organizational activism.

Also, I would like to know the salary of Joe Solmonese who is the President of HRC, and the salaries of the rest of the staff of that organization.

Best wishes, Jerry.

genevieve said...

HRC has been a bane to transgender people. They are more interested in their rich white donors than equality. I'm proud of thosew people who are willing to stand up for their beliefs.

Jerry, I believe that Joe Solomese makes approximately 350, 000 dollars a year.

Jerry Maneker said...

Thanks genevieve. As you know, the HRC threw transgender people under the bus when ENDA was being debated a couple of years ago, and along with its ineffective stance regarding today's courageous action by Lt. Choi and others, it seems to me that political expediency, and perhaps even cowardice, are high on its agenda.

For the head of any civil rights organization to receive anything approaching $350,000 a year (perhaps excluding perks) is outrageous. For a seeming weakling like Solmonese to receive such a sum boggles the mind!

I agree with Don Charles: Let's not support HRC, hopefully get rid of it, and replace it with a civil rights organization worthy of that designation.

Take care, Jerry.

genevieve said...

I never did support HRC and I neer will.